Depakote: Birth Defect Side Effects

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

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The drug Depakote is a compound of divalproex sodium and valproic acid, used in the United States to treat migraine headaches, seizure disorders and manic episodes associated with bipolar disorder. Depakote is manufactured by the drug company Abbott Laboratories. As a treatment for migraines and other ailments, Depakote was once more widely prescribed, without warnings, to pregnant women, until it was discovered that there was a significant risk of birth defects from the use of Depakote, including spinal defects.

Neural tube defects are the most common of the problems that have occurred as a result of the use of valproic acide during pregnancy. Incidences of NTDs are estimated to be at 1-2% of exposed fetuses. Other birth defects can include:

  • Spina bifida
  • Cleft palate
  • Facial dysmorphism
  • Congenital cardiac defects
  • Limb reduction and/or other skeletal anomalies.

Physicians are advised to counsel their patients on the potential risks associated with the use of Depakote during pregnancy. If you or a loved one has suffered harm as a result of the use of Depakote, seek legal help immediately to protect your rights. There is no fee and no other obligation, however, if you delay, you may lose your right to seek compensation for injuries caused by Depakote due to state-imposed time limits for filing a Depakote lawsuit.

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